THREAD: Looking for games with simple controls for my 70+ year old dad.
  1. 12-23-2018, 05:34 AM
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    My dad doesn't have very good dexterity in his hands. So messing with the triggers and buttons at the same time can be challenging for him. Part of this is due to age, the other part is due to a degenerative nerve disease. For a bit of perspective: Skyrim was rough on him as the controls were a bit too complex and he couldn't react in time to not repeatedly die.

    He likes the Oddworld series You must login or register to view this content. You must login or register to view this content. You must login or register to view this content. (Abe's Odyssey, Stranger's Wrath, etc.) and the Spyro series (he and I played the original trilogy together 20 years ago). More or less: he likes goofy games with simple-ish controls that can keep an adult entertained. He saw the new Crash Bandicoot demo in a store and didn't like how linear it felt. Games that have an easy/story mode would also be good.

    Any suggestions would be wonderful!
    Last edited by Bansisingh ; 12-24-2018 at 03:12 PM.

  2. 12-23-2018, 03:56 PM
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    Originally Posted by Bansisingh View Post
    My dad doesn't have very good dexterity in his hands. So messing with the triggers and buttons at the same time can be challenging for him. Part of this is due to age, the other part is due to a degenerative nerve disease. For a bit of perspective: Skyrim was rough on him as the controls were a bit too complex and he couldn't react in time to not repeatedly die.

    He likes the Oddworld series You must login or register to view this content. You must login or register to view this content. You must login or register to view this content. (Abe's Odyssey, Stranger's Wrath, etc.) and the Spyro series (he and I played the original trilogy together 20 years ago). More or less: he likes goofy games with simple-ish controls that can keep an adult entertained. He saw the new Crash Bandicoot demo in a store and didn't like how linear it felt. Games that have an easy/story mode would also be good.

    Any suggestions would be wonderful!


    Not knowing his exact comfort and skill level it's hard to say, but aside from the controls themselves there are also accessibility options which have improved recently. More and more games now offer the option to completely skip quick-time events, for example, which are easy for most healthy people but can be a major challenge for someone with slower reaction times. A recent example would be the new Spider-Man game, which also just added a new, lower difficulty mode in the latest patch, but the controls can also be a bit complex if he has trouble with the triggers. Even just playing through the story and nothing else, there are times where you need to hold down both R2 and L2 at the same time for example. But making the point that games are getting better and better at recognizing that not everyone has the same reaction time and it has little to do with inherent skill.

    It might be helpful to hear some games he's enjoyed in the past and which he could still play and enjoy today despite advancing age and degenerative nerve disease. That could give a helpful reference point for finding games of similar controls and also content/style.

    In the meantime all I can really say is that a lot of narrative style games, especially the better Telltale games, are very enjoyable, have decent accessibility options for the few quick time events, quite engaging if you like a good story, and if you do fail a section (you can only fail the non-dialogue sections), you only lose maybe a minute of progress at most. Guardians of the Galaxy, Batman season 1, Walking Dead season 1, The Wolf Among Us, Tales from the Borderlands, there have been some good ones. They just are very different styles of games from what you've mentioned.

    For platformer type games like Oddworld, most of the ones I've played have been relatively difficult. The only exception I can think of off the top of my head would be The Deadly Tower of Monsters when it was free, but I honestly can't remember how complicated the controls might have been. Decent story and decent humor too.

    EDIT: Thought of another idea. I saw your post on replacing thermal compounded and installing a solid state drive, and so I'm guessing you know your way around computers so probably have one or could build one for cheaper than the pre-made ones. I don't know if your father's ever played a strategy game before, but a turn-based strategy game requires zero reaction time and zero dexterity. They're also extremely plentiful these past 10 years especially on PC. If he's never played one before, like I had not until 1988 or so, they have plenty of difficulty modes available and if it's still too challenging, there are a lot of free trainers to simplify it a bit more. They're a ton of fun, they keep the mind active which becomes more important if you're not working anymore (hopefully he's not at his age), and I could recommend a ton of great ones. Also not linear at all and infinite replayability. Just would need a PC for most of them and the ones that are on console play much better on PC. I wouldn't recommend a real-time strategy game for someone with reaction time and dexterity issues (except ones with an easy spacebar pause button like the 2 Homeworld games or Sins of a Solar Empire), but turn-based like a 4x game should pose no challenges as long as he enjoys them.

    Just trying to brainstorm. The games you've mentioned are platformers I think and I'm not familiar with a lot of platformers where reaction time, at least, is not a major factor.
    Last edited by aeneax ; 12-23-2018 at 04:25 PM.

  3. 12-25-2018, 12:51 PM
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    Originally Posted by Bansisingh View Post
    My dad doesn't have very good dexterity in his hands. So messing with the triggers and buttons at the same time can be challenging for him. Part of this is due to age, the other part is due to a degenerative nerve disease. For a bit of perspective: Skyrim was rough on him as the controls were a bit too complex and he couldn't react in time to not repeatedly die.

    He likes the Oddworld series You must login or register to view this content. You must login or register to view this content. You must login or register to view this content. (Abe's Odyssey, Stranger's Wrath, etc.) and the Spyro series (he and I played the original trilogy together 20 years ago). More or less: he likes goofy games with simple-ish controls that can keep an adult entertained. He saw the new Crash Bandicoot demo in a store and didn't like how linear it felt. Games that have an easy/story mode would also be good.

    Any suggestions would be wonderful!

    Give Rayman a try